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Emperor - Prometheus: The Discipline of Fire and Demise
Review: Continuing the slide into years of decay, Emperor unleash an album of often technically stunning riffs which are placed into simple songs with basic concepts in a style that distinguishes the "new Emperor" from his old. While the strength of instrumentalism and songwriting skills often seem to carry them through, the boys from Emperor run into trouble when the necessary bonding of concept to music to lyrical structure cannot be completed and what is instead is the exercise in basic musical statement that leaves no one in the audience wondering. Songs are clearly dualistic, with each half reflecting the other in the most-repeated theme, but even the structural detours Emperor employ lack focus - there is no concept except that of scattered songs, thus no concept in sound for which to aim, and the result is an amalgamation of black metal techniques and known juxtapositions of emotional logic, yet there is no connection from the unknown to the unknown and thus really no mystique or majesty to this album. For black metal of its day it is perfectly competent, but no more, and not of an enduring power of listenability.